Me in Trivandrum

Until February 2005, I just know Trivandrum as just any other capital city of some distant Indian state. Suddenly in February, then one of my senior manager mandated that I should go to Trivandrum on permanent basis from Hyderabad. Being a fresher in Software Industry, I had not much option. I could have created some cock-and-bull stories like many of my other colleagues, but being a professional I refrained from doing so.Also with me were 9 other colleagues. Bhanu, Arun, Gopi were close to me and Praneeth, whom we welcomed to ease our individual shares of our house-rent and other 5, Sundar, Vijay, Rajendra, Sukumar [ a psycho] and Nirmal [ a weirdo ] who too made their mind to go to Mallu Land.

Phase I

Start Date: Feb 17, 2005
End Date : Nov 25, 2005

We alighted Sabari Express at 1930 hrs on Feb 18, 2005. Then we went straight to our company-provided accommodation, Rajadhani, a 3 -star Hotel near Bakery Junction.Everyone looked strange.We were like aliens in Mallu Land.Surprised to see sweet chicken biryani topped with pine apple slice, closed shops at 8 PM, very very calm roads which made us feel like midnight at 9PM were just few of the surprises.Being a weekend, we went to Technopark, house for Software Industry in Trivandrum.We immediately managed to get into a 2BHK in Kazhakuttam near Technopark.Within a week after we reported to our new boss in CSP Trivandrum, we started hating everything about Trivandrum. This is just the beginning of our travails.

After that I spent 9 months cribbing, jogging early morning on Technopark by-pass till Toyota show room, playing mid night cricket, reading lots and lots of books, visiting the surrounding beaches, touring places like Kanyakumari, Attirapalli, and Cochin , experiencing the Kerala culture, wondering the surrounding coconut trees( wherever you go , coconut tree follows you in Kerala) , cursing the hotels where we eat our food, cursing the auto wallahs who also demand the return fare, requesting(read:begging) all our visiting senior managers for a transfer close to our homes.In July Praneeth left us. We were least bothered.Then we moved to new house to thinking to reduce our rent expense but were finally ended up paying more in terms of brokerage for a not-so-good house.Our math went wrong somewhere and we realized the mistake only after the damage has already happened.

Then slowly our dark era seemed to end.In November we saw decline in number of projects coming to our department in Trivandrum. So they started relieving people to other locations such as Chennai and Bangalore, but on short-term basis on the condition that we need to come back to Trivandrum. First Bhanu was sent to Chennai for few weeks which got extended furthur.Then came my chance Bangalore for 7 months [ One of the senior manager made it to 7 instead of 6, making all the short-term transfer benefits inapplicable for me. But again I didn’t bother much because I was so depressed that, I thought the very chance of going to Bangalore is a great benefit for me] . I thought I was so lucky among the bunch( which later proved very very wrong) after that Arun followed me within 2 weeks to Bangalore. So finally I got out of Trivandrum on 25th Of November.While leaving, I thought I will never come back to Trivandrum out of my choice.

This is the end of Phase I.

After that I faced worst of my professional life in Bangalore. I was depressed a lot not only because of my fate in office but also by the worst Bangalore infrastructure which took away gist out of my personal life. I used to waste my valuable evenings amidst irritating traffic jams on Hosur Road.These woes coupled with other dissatisfactions like exorbitant rents for a meager living spaces compelled me to rethink about Trivandrum.My skills and experience at that time were too inadequate to find another job.So I never tried seriously for a job shift at that point of time.I started appreciating best of Trivandrum then.I finally made my mind to shift to Trivandrum and successfully managed to get a nod from the manager who sent me to Bangalore.It wasn’t been easy too. But I somehow managed to go to Trivandrum. Sundar, who also came to Bangalore along with me from Trivandrum thinking of never returning again 🙂 was already there by the time I went back to Trivandrum.He went to Trivandrum couple of weeks earlier than me when I was in my 20 days vacation at my home in Vemagiri.

Phase II

Start Date: Aug 20, 2006
End date : Jan 29, 2007

I liked my life very much in my second stint in Trivandrum. I rented an independent 2 BHK in TKD Road, Muttada all for myself.I never shared it with anyone.I used to cook all myself. I bought my Lenovo Notebook.Even I started this blog from that house and best of the best thing that had happened to me: Sailu entered my life during that period itself. The people whom I can never forget are Mr Philpose and his family. They are real good people. He, Aunty, Her daughters, Smitha, a fellow Infoscion and Jasmine, who works for Visual Soft in Technopark.They treated me like their family member.If not for them, my second stint wouldn’t have been so smooth.They used to help me in every aspect.They treated me like their son.But for good or bad, this stint abruptly ended in Jan 2007 when I was called from Bangalore again for short term onsite assignment.I suddenly packed everything and headed to Bangalore.I preponed my engagement and wedding in the hurry to go onsite.But till today I am still here but thats different story.

My association with Trivandrum ended on Aug 17, 2007 when I got permanent transfer to Bangalore.I have nothing belonging to me in Trivandrum expect some items like huge 4X6 Duroflex mattress, my computer table and computer chair, which I am planning to bring on 1st of September.

Overall I had mixed experience with Trivandrum. I made some good friends and I learnt many good lessons.It has left many marks on my life.Some best, some good, some bad and some worse!

See the mobile bills I paid

Why cant mobile phone companies introduce some plans exclusively for would-be couples.They will get good profits in that segment.

Am suffering a lot due to lack of such plans.

My bill history

Month Bill Amount
——- ————
Oct-06 3125/-
Nov-06 3356/-
Dec-06 4457/-
Jan-07 6318/-
Feb-07 will definitely be any amount between 3K-4K or could exceed.

I learned that 1/- is the lowest price for which I can make STD call.

And there were days where I used to spend 300/- on mobile thinking that I have to bring it down next month!

Now I bought my bills significantly down.

The AM , PM confusion and the mistake I did

I could have posted on 30th January, 2007 but better late than never.

When a PM in blore called me for an onsite offer,with great enthu I started on last week Thursday to blore from tvm by train leaving my beloved aunt and uncle and the house they rented to me.Also I found this weekend as a perfect time to go hyd and meet my fiancee.Guess what, I immediately booked SpiceJet to hyd from blore on Friday itself and then return on sunday.I reached blore on friday morning 6:30Am and by 7:30 AM I am in ECC.

After refreshing I started at 1:30PM to Forum, shopped for myself and bought 2 gifts for my fiancee and then went to Airport to catch the flight and landed in hyd by 8:00PM,late by 2 hrs.Then checked in at friends house and started to see my fiancee at their house on Saturday morning.

I am very excited about meeting her and her father after a long time that too at their home.Saturday went well.We talked for long hours sitting side-by-side, went together to shop and had dinner together at a restaurant and then left her back at her home and started to my friends place.

Sunday morning again I went to her house and I was really unhappy as I have to leave to blore by afternoon.I really didnt like to leave her but had to move on. So unwillingly I sat on my father-in-laws scooter and headed to hyd airport.I bid good bye to him and went to SpiceJet check-in counter.

I was taken aback when I found that all the SpiceJet counters were empty! The flight SG219 to blore is scheduled at 00:45AM. I overlooked it as 12:45PM :-((. what to do? I again ran after counters of all other airlines enquiring about next flight to blore with lowfare. Finally stopped at Go Air to buy a blore ticket for next day (monday 8:20AM) and again bought a ticket spending 4250 INR :-(( and then went back to my fiancees home.They were shocked to see me back and learned the mistake I did. but what else can they do.They cant blame my mistake and hence they said OK. but the sad part is that I should not eat or sleep at their home because we were yet to be engaged.So finally decided to cancel Go Air ticket as well and start by bus that night itself on Sunday.My father-in-law bought one bus ticket from APSRTC for me and said bye to me at 8:00PM Sunday.

Then started my travails. The pain of leaving her coupled with this stupid mistake and the thoughts of spending whole night in bus made me real sick. But what to do. No other go.That bus was going too slow.I boarded at 8:00 PM Sunday and it reached Majestic at 10:45 AM Monday. Then I rushed to city bus stand to catch Volvo to E-city,reached ECC by 12:15 PM and reported to my PM at 1:30 PM Monday.

I did this silly mistake otherwise this weekend would have been more memorable for pleasant reasons!

Summary:

Positives: [1] Learned good lesson to be more careful about details.
[2] Spent few more hours with my fiancee.

Negatives: [1] Lost 2,600 INR ( SpiceJet fare to blore 2000 + Go Air cancellation charges 600)
[2] 3650 INR ( Fare 4250 – Cancellation charges 600) got locked in with Go Air as they issued Credit Note instead of returning money.
[3] Suffered for more than 12 hrs in bus.
[4] Troubled my fiancee and her father.He plied me from Miyapur to Airport amidst irritating traffic without knowing that I wud be back on the same road after him :-((

Nevertheless, I learnt a good lesson! Time to be more careful!!!

Now I am staying in ECC room#109, am looking forward to work on this new project and awaiting onsite in 30 more days!

My Flight Itineraries

Flying, at some point of my life seemed to be a distant dream.Taking the ticket price into account, I could not have afforded until sometime.But thanks to Air Deccan, it made people with average income levels like me to afford flight.

So my first flight was Air Deccan from Cochin to Hyderabad on 4th of November 2006.For that I paid 4000/- . I flew it out of necessity.I flew because I have to meet Sailu in Hyderabad and I have only weekend.

Then I flew SpiceJet from Bangalore to Hyderabad to meet her dad on 26th of January 2007.And I missed the return flight by misinterpreting 0045 hrs as 12:45PM :-(( But this has been a very good learning experience.After this bitter experience, even these days I will verify schedules 1000 times.I did one more mistake by purchasing GoAir one way ticket to Bangalore for 4000/- and again canceling the same , all in hurry.I lost 600 as cancellation charges and got credit note for the balance 3400/-. This is when I understood the meaning of credit note.

Next I flew GoAir from Bangalore to Hyderabad for my marriage shopping on 17th of March 2007 availing the credit note. Then I flew SpiceJet from Bangalore to Hyderabad and Air Deccan from Hyderabad to Rajahmundry on 24th of March 2007 for my marriage.

Finally I flew Air Deccan again to spend my birthday with Sailu in Hyderabad on 15th of June and returned on 18th of June to Bangalore.

I enjoyed all my flights very much. I fly mainly to avoid long travel hours by bus/train. I would rather spend few bucks more to save my travel time.But now I don’t know how long I can continue this.

I liked air travel very much.I enjoyed the feeling of floating in clouds very much.

I have travelled all low cost carriers except Indigo.I don’t think it would be any different from the LCCs I flew.So I am not interested in this.

So here are my next 2 flying dream

[1] Fly Kingfisher and Jet along with Sailu.
[2] Make my parents fly any LCC.

Will definitely realize them soon!

Air Deccan

Air Deccan is delighting me a lot with its on-time performance and its ticket price.

It is the first airline I flew on 4th of November 2006 to meet my Sailu in Hyderabad for the first time.As people criticize, it got delayed by 3 hrs! but after that for all the 4 times, it took off on time and the base fare I paid is less than 1000 INR. Highest being 800 and lowest being 10.

But they charged me extra for 12 kgs@70 INR per kg when I flew to Rajahmundry for my marriage.For that flight, base fare being 10 INR, I didn’t bother much.

Overall I liked Air Deccan very much.

Chocolate@CCD

Whenever I go to CCD outlet in Infy for Hot Chocolate, a black rectangular box gift-packed with red ribbon knot used to attract me.I came to know it to be a chocolate. Considering its cost(150/-) and size I thought of gifting it to someone.Who else can be better recipient of chocolate as a gift than my better-half Sailu.So I picked up that chocolate [ name: Amorous caption: The Secret Love Story ] as my birthday gift to her.

We opened it only to get disappointed.It taste does not match with its looks.

Summary: Don’t buy that chocolate again.

An attempt to control my living expenses

Measurement is the first step that leads to control and eventually to improvement. If you can’t measure something, you can’t understand it. If you can’t understand it, you can’t control it. If you can’t control it, you can’t improve it.”
– H. James Harrington

I started applying this principle in my day -to-day spendings.And I successfully measured my spendings for May 2007.